A message to Bama basketball fans from a member of the famed Rocket 8

Thought I'd share this note I got from 2008 Chick-fil-A SEC Basketball Legend for ALABAMA - Leon Marlaire, Guard, 1952-56
An All-SEC performer in 1954, Marlaire helped lead Alabama to the 1956 SEC Championship with a perfect 14-0 SEC record. Nicknamed "Alabama's Hardwood Quarterback" and "Mr. Outside" and "Mr. Long Distance" for his shooting, he was a key member, playing point guard, of Alabama's famed "Rocket 8" basketball team that was ranked 5th in the nation in 1956. He scored 833 career points for an average of 9.2 points and averaged 4.6 career rebounds. Marlaire went on to play professionally on the 1956 ADA Oil Team and with the Denver Truckers. He graduated from Alabama in 1956 with a business degree and has been married since 1956 to his wife Vicki, also a University of Alabama graduate. Marlaire founded the Birmingham Tip-Off Club in 1974, an organization that still thrives today with more than 500 members.

Here's the message.

Bama Basketball Fans:

You and I will agree, it is great to see our Alabama men’s basketball program at #1. Congratulations to Coach Oats, the coaching staff, and the team for their spectacular winning season.

Take the time to follow the Alabama games remaining on the road to the 2023 national championship. You will
be glad you did because the team is a “winner”. They are enjoyable to watch with all the team’s effort to win and Coach Oats has the team playing like # 1 in the nation and this team can win the Final Four.

As a member of Alabama’s 1956 Rocket Eight team and now 89 years old, I still enjoy watching Alabama basketball. Very proud the basketball program has become “the best” again and now looking forward to Alabama becoming the 2023 National Champion.

It is very special having both our Alabama basketball and football programs at the top nationwide. Proud you and I can enjoy both again.

Best regards and let's keep the Tide rolling !!!!!!

Leon Marlaire